Personalized Paper Cuttings - Emma Boyes

I recently came across Emma Boyes, a UK paper cutter who has only been creating designs since last December. Each hand drawn and hand cut piece is unique and cut from a single sheet of paper.


I asked Emma about her work and process. Enjoy!

My background is in interior design and I also have a masters in digital design, but I put that on hold to have my little girl. What started out as a hobby has now become my main job and I'm hoping to get a website and blog sorted in the new year. I thank my lucky stars every day that I am able to earn a living doing something I adore whilst being a full-time mum.

How did you go about learning paper cutting?

I'm completely self-taught and really just started experimenting. Whilst studying interior design I often had to make card models so I already had all the tools I needed - cutting mat, scalpels, and loads of paper. It was just a way of using what I had on hand. I instantly fell in love and now I can't imagine doing anything else.

I didn't read any books about it or do research, but learned through trial and lots of error. In the beginning I remember spending hours on quite a simple design and breaking my heart when I made a mistake right at the end. Every mistake teaches you what not to do next time.


I found you via Facebook where there seems to be such a supportive paper cutting community. Quite a few of you are located in the UK and you link to one another and share images.

When I set up my page last February I started finding lots of other paper cutters. I was astounded by how popular the craft was, as none of my family or friends had even heard of it when I first started. I became friends with a fellow paper cutter and she got me some of my first paying customers by kindly sharing one of my pictures with her followers. I think its important to support each other and I believe that there is room for all of us as we each have unique styles that appeal to different tastes.


Have you had the chance to meet other paper cutters in person?

I would love to say that we all meet up and share crafty tales, but the reality is that most of us are fitting in our work around family life. That's why Facebook is so amazing. We can support and encourage each other by simply sitting at our desks. Every day I'm inspired by the other crafters and artist pages.


Lest you think all Emma cuts are pretty leaves and flowers, here's a playful piece she created for a young girl's room... judging by the paints and crayons, I have a feeling the recipient enjoys being creative too.


Do you have a tip to share with other paper cutters who are just starting out?

My top tip would be to have a spare piece of paper nearby. If you're not sure how to cut a particular piece, then do a practice piece first. More often than not this little trick will save you from having to start all over again.

People always say to me you must have the patience of a saint, but I find the whole process highly addictive. Seeing the end result is such a high!


Emma Boyes is on Facebook and Instagram. Her Etsy shop is Emma Boyes Paper Cut Art.

Top photo credit: Antonia McIntosh, who won the family tree paper cutting in a giveaway on Emma's page. Antonia of Birdie and Bee also does lovely paper cuttings.

All Things Paper is an Etsy (AWIN) affiliate.
Ann Martin
Ann Martin

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